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2011 in Pictures, Volume I

When I considered collecting my favorite pictures from this year I went through them and gathered all the photos that meant something special to me. What I noticed is that I take a lot of photos of flowers and food and, of course, people I love.

To pay homage to the year 2011 I wanted to share them all here but I ended up with nearly 50 of them that I just couldn't whittle down any more. That's why this is Volume I but I vowed to myself that I would simply do two volumes and get them both posted before 2012 got here.

New year. Clean house. (After the tree was taken down and all the pine needles, save for about 95 of them, were picked up.)

My youngest, Morgan, turned 16. The world trembled.

Catching him laughing is pretty difficult. Nothing makes me happier.

Twice in one year? WHAT?

My sister, Tracy, and nephew came to visit me for my surprise 40th.

All four of the kids were in one place this year.

My Mallory and my nephews (her cousins), Kyle and Kenneth.

Maddie with my friends. I used to call them my Twitter friends, but they really are just friends. Even if some of them treat you kindly and decide to just up and move to New York City. (I miss you, Alex and Craig!)

Mallory through a balloon. It's like Alice and the Looking Glass except not at all.

I scoured the alley with my friend, Jeannette, looking for just the right staircase for a photo. Then we spent the rest of the morning taking photos at the farmer's market. It was a great Saturday.

The Cuban played on a softball league this summer and I had to practice throwing and catching a lot with him. Thankfully, I don't entirely stink at sports.

I made it clear, once again, that no one is to touch my hair without my express permission.

I mastered the art of grainy self-portraits in the car.

My garden flourished despite my ignorance and neglect.

More pictures of stuff from the garden that I kept uploading to different place as I outsourced my flower identification to the whole Internet.

We made a huge purchase this year and bought a little dumpy thingy that we named Dumpy.

This picture, of Mallory's birthday, reminded me that Morgan owns a lot of Star Wars t-shirts and that we spend a lot of birthday time around this table.

Mason played "I'm not touching you" with a dinosaur. For most of 2011.

A message on a building in St. Louis giving out excellent advice. Wake Up, indeed.

Mallory is a joyous person even when she has Crazy Eyes.

I went to Atlanta and saw friends at the Coca-Cola headquarters.

Mallory did a wedding for a friend of hers and put me to work. Resolved: I never want to be a wedding planner.

I don't know what to say about this one. I just like it.

During the year of 2011, The Cuban spent a lot of time in the kitchen. This isn't even a surprise. But that 7-cheese macaroni WAS a surprise. It made me fall in love with him all over again this year.

One day in the summer I noticed that a longtime blogger friend of mine, Kim, was visiting Springfield for a wedding. (I say "noticed" because she checked in on Facebook at Abe Lincoln's house so then I contacted her.) We decided to meet up where I met a friend of hers, Lisa Kelly. After days of traveling and eating wedding food, they were both craving fresh veggies and a homecooked meal so we invited the two of them for dinner.

The Cuban made his delicious homemade dressing and put out a spread for them. Kim, Lisa, The Cuban and I kept joking about how bizarre it is to meet new people and open up your home to them and how you end up really liking them and connecting. Later on, I met up with Lisa for lunch when I was in California and introduced her to my daughter, Maddie.

Last month, quite unexpectedly, Lisa died and her body finally gave in to the cancer she battled. I'm not always prepared for what life brings me or who life brings me, but I do know that I try never to miss an opportunity. Ever so briefly, life brought me two dinner guests and now one of them is gone leaving the other to pick up the pieces, miss their friendship, and mourn the loss.

Even though she's got a mouthful of food in this picture, I think Lisa would have found this really funny and since it makes me happy to see and remember this special time, I'm including it.

My dog, Lola, didn't get any cuter but I still took an obscene number of photos of her.

My travels took me to BlogHer '11 where I met up with some dad bloggers who did their best Sears Catalog pose for me.

The amazingly humorous Georgia and the incredibly crafty Jenny. Nothing feels as good as hanging out with friends in the whirlwind that is a blogging convention.

All the redheads sat together. In the shade, of course. Heather, Maddie, and Jen bonded in a way that made me jealous of them and resentful of being a brunette.

Jessica. She has a Not Boyfriend and I have The Cuban. She's a funny Chicagoan. How could I not love spending quality time with her?

The next installment goes up tomorrow as I squeeze in one final post of the year for 2011. Thanks for indulging me this trip through the last year. All in all, I can't complain too much. What's the point in that? I would rather spend time acknowledging things that happened, take lessons from them, and learn all new ones in 2012.
« 2011 in Pictures, Volume II | Main | What Are You Doing New Year's Eve? »

Reader Comments (16)

Oh. My.

I was enjoying the photos of your ridiculously good-looking family and then you hit me with this memory.

I am beyond honored that you included me and Lisa, and I treasure the fact that you treasure her, too. Thank you.

December 30, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKim Tracy Prince

I am so happy that you and Lisa were a part of my 2011. It's people like you that made my year all the better. Love you, lady.


December 30, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMocha Momma

What a fabulous idea! And such wonderful photos. Also a reminder to me to pull out my own camera more often and capture people/moments/things that are dear to me or simple make me smile.

Happy New Year to you and yours!

December 30, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTrina

Definitely love this. Everyone is so beautiful!

December 30, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKarianna

There are not enough pictures of me on here, but that's ok. Hey Kelly, remember that time you sabered a champagne bottle in your backyard? I still have the video on my phone ;-). <3

December 30, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAlex J

Yes, I do remember that! In fact, last week when some girlfriends were over I screwed up opening a bottle of sparkling moscato and then I took it out on the deck to saber it and VOILA! We had wine!

Most of the other pics of you, Alex, are playing on the Wii. You really want me to include those?

December 30, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMocha Momma

Thank you, Karianna. I was afraid it was a bit of a copout to do mostly photos but then I did my own version of "Wake up!" and said, "Awww, to hell with it."

December 30, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMocha Momma

Trina, most of the time I forget, too. Some events call for a camera and others make a camera seem intrusive. There's a balance I try to strike and this is the result. In all, I'm happy enough with it.

Happy New Year to you as well.

December 30, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMocha Momma

I LOVED this review of the year in pictures. LOVED it.

December 30, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLu

If only I'd done this before there would be pictures of YOU and ME together. We should fix that next year. Let's do that.

December 30, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMocha Momma

LOVE it. I love the idea, but further, your pictures are great, your fam is adorable, and your dog's a sweetie pie.

December 30, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterm

What a great tribute; the pictures were awesome. I love the emotion in each one, the transference was perfect. I can't wait to see what you post next!

December 30, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterElizabeth

[...] 2011 in Pictures, Volume I [...]

i just wish i still lived in st. louis so i could see you more often. at least we had san diego.

January 1, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterohjennymae

Great recap! I can't wait to be part of your 2012!! xo

January 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJeannette

I've noticed that looking back at my photos for the year makes me really grateful for the many blessings in my life. You, my dear, have some pretty spectacular blessings in your life. Happy New Year!

January 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCindy

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